internat librarian's Reviews > Frankenstein

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
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's review
Nov 14, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: classics, gothic, grades-8-and-up
Read in November, 2011

It’s impossible to sustain horror when smothered under thick Victorian prose. Then again, this novel aims to be a treatise on the great questions of existence, not a trick or treat electric shock. The result is the most blatant example of “telling, not showing” I’ve ever read.

Frankenstein’s monster is a classic concept, but the scientist as narrator is a pompous, stupefying bore. It doesn’t matter whether he’s describing his dearest friends and family, the landscapes of Europe, or his emotional trauma, it’s all painful soap opera. The monster introduces himself with 58 pages of similar bombast: proof that creator and creature are perfectly matched as asinine adversaries.

Their intertwined revenge has potential, but Shelley is much more interested in embellishing her life lessons on the nature of humanity. Congratulations to humanity for ignoring her instruction, in favor of head bolts, Halloween, and Herman Munster.

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